My first few days in Lancaster and Morecombe have been eye-opening!
After sending the last letter, Elder Stubbs and I went across the
river and over to a recent convert’s house named Ryan. He is 18 and is
going to University in Lancaster (I can’t remember which one!). We
taught him about the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and I could see how much
it had already blessed him! His grandfather who he lives with is very
anti-church, so we go to his grandmother’s house to teach. We sat in
his little brother’s room and had a great testimony meeting. He just
got the Aaronic Priesthood, so we invited him to bless the sacrament
on Sunday, but more on that later.
In order to understand the proselyting pattern in our, you have to
remember an acronym, QGC. Quality Gospel Conversations. In order for a
contact on the street to be a QGC, you must teach a principle,
testify, and ask for an appointment. So, after that lesson, we walked
down the street and made contact with a man named Mark. He made an
appointment, but it ended up falling through.
That night, we decided to go meet the members. One thing that I was
unaware of was that dinner here means lunch, tea means dinner, and
supper is a snack between tea and a late night snack. For a country
that makes fun of how fat we Americans are, they sure do have lots of
meals! We had a tea appointment at the Smith’s house in Morecombe
(said like Malcome), which is a bit east of Lancaster. It was raining
quite hard outside, but they had a hot meal of chicken, Brussels
sprouts, carrots, cooked potatoes, and gravy ready. It was just what I
wanted. It was quite humbling to be in their home. They live in a
really old hotel that has been run down, but they are so happy.
After that, we went over to the Gallagher’s house just down the
street. Everybody here is related. For example, Sister Gallagher is
Sister Smith’s daughter, and Brother Gallagher is somehow related to
everybody. Anyways, I had to laugh because something that dad said
would happen did happen. The Gallagher’s asked if we wanted biscuits
and juice, and we had to accept. They brought out digestives and
watered down Squash. I had to hold back the giggles.
Friday night, I was introduced to tracting for the first time. We had
picked a street the previous night and took the bus to it and began
knocking doors. The first house we came to, a man was smoking out
front, and we had a great conversation with him. Other than that, it
was a bunch of slammed doors. While we were tracting, the Dominos man
came to two different houses to deliver. I guess that Dominos has
better success than we do.
On Saturday, we went on exchanges. It was nice to see that I wasn’t
the only terrified person from the MTC. We talked to a few people, but
nothing came of it. That night, we went to another family’s home. It
was great to meet all of the ward members, we just need somebody to
teach in their homes!
Sunday morning was one of the most enchanting ones of my life. We were
walking to church and there was a thick fog all around. It lifted a
bit right as we got across the Lune River, and you could see the
outline of the cathedral in the city. Then the bells started to ring.
You know that part in Indiana Jones where he says “Ah, Venice?” In my
head, I was saying ‘Ah, England.’ That was something that started the
day off right. We got to church and I officially introduced myself to
the Bishop and the whole ward. There are roughly 80 active members.
The worst part was that Ryan didn’t show up, so that was a downer.
After church, Elder Stubbs and I went back to the flat and made
enchiladas. They were soooooooo good! We studied for a few hours, then
went to Shrewsbury Street to tract. It was a really sad experience. It
wasn’t just that few people opened their doors, it was that of those
that did, none were all that nice. Some started to personally attack
us as people. The best part of Elder Stubbs is that he is a master at
just allowing it to all brush off. So we let it all brush off and came
back to the flat.
The work here is hard, but I am sure that it will be worth it! Ether
12 has been a great comfort as we press on! No matter how many doors
are slammed on us, we know that what we are doing is right and that it
is the work of the Lord!
I love you all and miss you each and every day!
Talk to you next week!